Ideas for Learners Promoting Literacy, Inquiry, and Meaningful Learning Experiences
James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl

Book Summary

James lives with two horribly mean aunts, until one day when a strange and magical thing happens to the peach tree in their back yard.  His adventure involves several over-sized insects, including a whining Earthworm, a rude Centipede, and a kindly Ladybug.

James and the Giant Peach book cover
James and the Giant Peach

Book Review

This shows some of the worst of humanity, in both its human characters and through the insect characters, but it also shows characters working together. James himself is a good-hearted, helpful person in wretched circumstances who finds himself rescued by some magic seeds, only to face a new series of challenges. He moves from a helping role to more of a problem-solving, leadership role as the story progresses. As with most Roald Dahl books, self-sufficient children in the face of wickedness from adults is a prominent theme in this story.

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By lunchtime, the whole place was a seething mass of men, women, and children all pushing and shoving to get a glimpse of this miraculous fruit." p. 21

Topics and Themes for this book:

  • Helping Others
  • Solving Problems
  • Teamwork; People Bring Different Talents to a task
  • Imagination

Discussion Questions for this book:

The best discussion questions, of course, are generated by and contemplated by readers. These questions are designed to avoid major spoilers about the book, and to provide a starting point for teachers, parents, and student reading groups.

**Questions coming soon**

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